Teacher fired for branding students with cross

Filed under: Health & Safety: Babies, In The News, Weird But True, Day Care & Education, Religion & Spirituality

It isn't uncommon these days to hear stories about teachers behaving badly in the classroom. I am a big believer in consequences and I am often left mind-boggled when these rogue teachers suffer none. Fortunately, this isn't one of those stories. Oh, we've got the bad teacher alright, but at least this one is no longer in charge of children.

John Freshwater, a science teacher at Mount Vernon Middle School in central Ohio, is accused of not only preaching his Christian beliefs in the classroom, but also of branding his students with a cross. As in using a high-frequency generator to burn the skin on the arms of kids. Freshwater doesn't exactly deny the charge, but claims he was just demonstrating how the generator thing worked and that the image was actually an "X", not a cross. I don't care if the image was Mickey Mouse, you don't burn the flesh of your students.

School board members agree and last week voted 5-0 to fire him. He is entitled to challenge the dismissal and his attorney says he intends to do so. But I just don't see how he could succeed in getting his job back considering the fact that there are actual photos of a child's branded arm. Not only that, district administrators say they've been dealing with complaints against Freshwater for at least half of his 21 year teaching career.

Of course this story isn't entirely without a mind-boggling aspect. Before firing Freshwater for intentionally injuring his students, school administrators tried to find him another position in the school. Fortunately for the kids in that district, he's not qualified to do anything else.

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.